I saw this tag over on Kim @ Traveling Books, and I was hooked right from the idea of a whole tag about dark academia, but then the questions were fantastic and got me gushing, so here we are. This was originally created by Youtubers *emmie* & CarolynMarieReads!
What is your favorite “academia” or “dark” book + movie?
This has 100% gotta be Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo and Dead Poets Society.
As I’m thinking on this question, it’s occurring to me that I don’t consume a lot of dark academia media, and I’d really like to fix that because I enjoy both of these immensely. I’d also like to write a dark academia someday, so it’d be prudent to find my way toward more of it.
What dead poet would you like to have a drink with?
THIS IS SO HARD! I’d like to say Keats, but he’d undoubtedly make me cry, and while a large part of me is screaming for Rilke, I’ve got to go with the obvious answer here and say Wilde. And I know that Wilde is a lot of things and not just a poet, but my goodness, I have so many questions, and he just invokes so much awe in me that I’d die to be able to chat with him.
What is your favorite painting and/or sculpture?
I don’t know about favorite, but the Lucifer art installation by Paul Fryer in the Holy Trinity church in Marylebone, Westminster is truly one of the creepiest things I’ve ever seen. Not in person, unfortunately, but I stumbled across it while looking into the history behind the more societally accepted sculptures of my favorite devil, and I cannot stop thinking about it. It’s been months now, and it still haunts me a bit at night. However, it doesn’t haunt me quite like the Vatican’s apocalypse piece because that is just downright scary, more haunts me in that it’s so horrific that it makes me even more upset and angry about what’s been unrightfully done to Lucifer.
Also, I haven’t read this article much beyond the first few paragraphs because I am the worst, but I did look at all the pretty pictures, and you should, too! Though, be warned, they’re not for the faint of heart if this sculpture above is too much for you.
What is your favorite architectural marvel?
It’s got to be a tie because if I don’t talk about the Dante building, who even am I?
But I also couldn’t not talk about the monastery in Batalha, so here we are with two. The Palacio Barolo in Buenos Aires, is a tower completely designed to imitate the entirety of The Divine Comedy, and if there wasn’t currently a pandemic happening, I would have tried to find a way to get there the moment I discovered it. Seriously, Google it and look at the inside, it’s insane.
And then there’s my beloved Mosteiro da Batalha in Portugal, which I want so badly to visit someday. It features heavily in my vampire novella, is always sitting in the background in the vampire novel, and is briefly featured in my current researcher & librarian book. Every picture I see of it makes me fall more in love with it, and I can’t wait until the day I get to visit it.
What Shakespeare play would you want to be the lead in?
HAMLET! Oh my gosh, hands down, no chance it would be anything else. I had a professor in college for two separate classes in different terms. I don’t speak a lot now to non-friends, and I definitely didn’t then, so I never really talked in his first class. But the second class I took with him was all about Shakespeare, and we freaking started with Hamlet, and ya girl nearly lost it. My hand went up so damn fast when he asked who wanted to read for Hamlet’s role, and he actually said out loud, “I don’t know if I’ve ever heard your voice before.” He definitely did for the rest of the semester, too.
How many languages do you speak and which language would you most like to learn?
Two and a half? My first language is English, and I am functionally fluent in Portuguese. I’m working on getting better at it, too, so hopefully, someday soonish, I’ll just be fluent! The half is actually for three languages because while I can no longer speak French, I can mostly get by reading it. And though my knowledge is pretty limited of Italian and ASL these days, I could stagger my way through La commedia if you needed me to in Italian, and I can recognize a solid portion of signs.
I’d love to actually get my French to fluency again, but if we’re talking a language that I’d like to learn from the ground up, it’d definitely be Greek or Arabic. Other than Portuguese characters, a lot of my characters are either Greek or Arabic, and I just love not having to use a translator while I’m writing my Portuguese characters, and it would be so nice to do the same for them.
What is your favorite quote (from poetry, prose, plays, etc.)?
We all know what’s coming.
Okay, but if we’re not going for Tolkien because we want to get a little more classic literature, it’s abandon all hope, ye who enter here above the gates of hell in TDC because duh? Does it get much cooler than that? Or, hell is empty and all the devils are here from The Tempest also because duh.
WAIT WHAT AM I EVEN SAYING
I am a liar who lies, it is, always and forever, Bright Star by John Keats. I have it memorized, and I can recite it on command.
Which fictional character’s death is your ideal way to go?
I’d have to say Beowulf? Dies fighting a dragon? I mean, I don’t want to slay a dragon, but if I’ve got to go, it’s going to be in style.
What university/college would you most like to attend?
Oh, all of them. Honestly, I don’t much care about the university, if money wasn’t an issue, I would just stay in school forever. I love learning so much, and it’s just one of my favorite things to do, so I’d like to get a million degrees at whichever schools will take me.
(But also, catch me hitting up Oxford first for a philology degree so I can pretend Tolkien is still alive and hanging out as The Professor.)
What is your murder weapon or murder method of choice?
I’ve always wanted a sword, and we’re going to step out of mythology and ancient texts for a second to chat Deadpool.
My dudes, come on, katanas are the coolest, and I want to be enough of a badass that I can just casually flip them around in both hands before running off to get murdery with some villains.
In a more serious answer, though, specifically a named sword. I’m not even talking Andúril, although hell yes, because named swords go way back, and they’re one of my favorite things ever.
What mythology would you most like to a part of?
Probably Greek? It’s definitely the gayest of all of them, which is a big motivator for me, so even though Zeus is a total turd, I’d probably just be hanging in Hades’ court anyway.
If you had to do a PhD what would you choose to do it on?
PHILOLOGY! I am so eternally mad at myself for not realizing this was the path that made the most sense for me. I would have totally become a professor if I’d figured it out sooner because philology isn’t something that 101 students are going to take, and while I have no qualms with 101 classes, ya girl doesn’t want to teach that kind of curriculum, and it would have been amazing to just be able to constantly geek out over languages.
Which fictional character would you die for?
I mean, again, we all know what’s coming.
LOOK AT THIS CUTIE AND TELL ME HE DOESN’T DESERVE EVERYTHING GOOD IN THE WORLD! I WOULD DIE FOR HIM IN A HEARTBEAT!
Rapid-Fire: Pick One
Leather bound or cloth bound books
Leather bound. I don’t like cloth bound books at all, and though, realistically, I don’t even want leather bound books, I just want a standard hardback, if someone gave me a leather bound TDC, I’d probably spontaneously combust on the spot.
Dog-earing pages or highlighting pages
Dog-earing because ya girl already does! I only highlight when I’m reading poetry, so I wouldn’t really enjoy doing that in regular books, but yeah, I dog-ear to keep my place in everything I’m reading. And when I’m reading poetry, I dog-ear the top and leave it there to indicate it’s a favorite, as well as bottom of the page to indicate it’s a super extra favorite.
Sculptures or paintings
Paintings! I think that’s probably not what most people pick because sculptures are so much cooler, but I just love paintings so much. I could spend hours in a museum sitting in front of them, especially Van Gogh.
Piano or violin
Violin, easy. Any string instrument over piano, really, because while I do adore piano, it’s only a string instrument that’s going to move me to tears.
I’m so sad that this song is originally done on piano and that there’s not, like, an official strings version of it because I would just listen to this over and over again, and I’ve done so with the piano one while writing lately.
Films or theater
I know it’s weird, but films. I don’t get to go to the theater often, and though I really do love it, my attention wanes pretty quickly. I’ve seen the two great loves of my life, too, The Lion King and Phantom of the Opera, on Broadway, so there’s not much else theater that’s going to impress me beyond that. And I just love going to the movies so, so much, especially on a huge screen.
Poetry or prose
Prose, always. I do love poetry, and I’m always down to read it, but, at the end of the day, I have one shelf of poetry and four entire bookcases of prose, as is evident by my recent book haul:
Museums or bookshops
Bookshops, duh! I can spend hours in a museum, but only infrequently, and I could spend hours in a bookshop every week.
Smell of books or smell of coffee/tea
Despite the fact that I’m a huge tea drinker, and I love it more than anything in the world, I’m going to have to go with the smell of books. There’s just such a distinct smell, and the one I always think of is that mass market paperback popular fantasy smell that’s so poignant and throws me straight back into my childhood.
Fountain pen or typewriter
Neither? I mean, I guess a fountain pen if I had to, but that’s just because I’ve never used a typewriter, although I don’t think I’d enjoy it. I type at a 140 wpm speed, and a typewriter would definitely not be fast enough for me. A fountain pen wouldn’t, either, and my handwriting gets illegible pretty quickly because it can’t keep pace with my brain, so yeah, I’ll stick with my laptop.
New or used books
New! Used books are fine, and I have nothing against them, but I just prefer new books.